@Judith Slutler I read Paula Giddings' book When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America and it was enlightening to me as a white woman and a feminist on how white feminists threw WOC systematically under the bus.. Amazing book. http://books.google.com/books/about/When_and_Where_I_Enter.html?id=HWLwdOmdy9sC
Right on, par_parentese. I grew up in a farming community as well, and all of my friends who lived on farms were expected to help out. When I spent the day with them, I would usually help out with chores as well. Most jobs kids do on the farm are relatively safe, but farming at any scale is dangerous work and most people who grew up in an urban or suburban environment aren't aware of the realities of working with large animals, machinery, and heavy equipment. Most of the farmers I knew growing up were very careful about following safe farming practices, and were very protective of their kids. However you can get folks who are cavalier about safety and cut corners when working. Also, a lot of kids want to continue farming as adults and genuinely enjoy the work.
@Petrichoria On a more positive note, if you're willing to work for peanuts, you may be able to find a rural library (think really rural) that will hire someone without their degree because they won't pay over $30K for the job. You can see if you like the work before deciding to get your MLIS and have a grand adventure to boot.
@Petrichoria - Don't even bother with the Certification. I have been working as a children's librarian for six years. I was so lucky to get hired right before things went south. I work in a large county system with over 200 employees. We have been in a hiring freeze for the past four years. When our paraprofessionals leave, we fill the positions with temps; if we fill them at all. A quarter of the staff I work with at my branch are temps. When professionals leave, we usually hire internally. We have only had one professional hire outside of the system since the hiring freeze began.
If you really want to do youth services, find any public or school library in your area and start volunteering there. At the same time start a nationwide search for any paraprofessional position that you can find and see if you can get hired for it. Do not even think about going to library school until you have a library job in hand, and even then realize that you may be stuck working as a paraprofessional for several years after you receive your degree (like many of my co-workers have had to do).
I splurged a couple years back and bought two sets of earrings from Ted Muehling. I love, love, love them and wear them constantly. He has some amazing jewelry.
@KirRoyale - There were so many random Canadian children's shows. Does anyone remember The Rockets or Putnam's Prairie Emporium?